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Author Topic:   Hate-crime = Thought crime?
New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member


Message 91 of 376 (538047)
12-02-2009 6:52 PM
Reply to: Message 88 by onifre
12-02-2009 6:11 PM


Re: Spot on - post of the month for me
Wow, you really opened up there. I very much enjoyed reading that, thanks.

Just remember, if someone calls you a bigot, it just means that you've disagreed with an asshole.

I'm pretty much on the same page with you but:

It is an act of violence toward a single individual (or a few, or whatever) and the only ones victimized are those who were attacked. The attackers intentions could be whatever they want it to be, it doesn't matter and its irrelevant.

I can see some types of crimes as being more.

A mixed black/white couple moved into my parents old neighborhood after which someone through a malatov through their window. They moved because someone burnt a cross in their previous front yard. People who are doing shit like that are rally trying (ie intending) to send a message to the entire community. I think that does make it a worse crime that deserves a worse punishment.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 88 by onifre, posted 12-02-2009 6:11 PM onifre has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 113 by onifre, posted 12-05-2009 4:46 PM New Cat's Eye has not yet responded

  
Legend
Member (Idle past 3168 days)
Posts: 1226
From: Wales, UK
Joined: 05-07-2004


Message 92 of 376 (538048)
12-02-2009 6:58 PM
Reply to: Message 89 by Lithodid-Man
12-02-2009 6:31 PM


Re: My $10,000 (and where's my change?)
First of all - Holy shmokes, what's with the nastiness?

It's called sarcasm. I sometimes get like that when I get frustrated with what I perceive as naive or irrelevant arguments. Apologies if it came across as nasty, it wasn't meant to.

I am sorry, I must have misspoken when I said that hate crimes are the only crimes in existence that have any effect beyond the single victim. But seriously - did you really get that from what I said?

I'm afraid I did.

I was saying that I had not really put a lot of thought into how a defined hate crime may victimize others of the target group.

I understand, I was just pointing out (albeit in a sarcastic/nasty way) that pretty much all violent crime affects people besides the intended victims. Often, it's not easy to see if it's by accident or by design.

How do we (or can we) separate a crime that makes people in general stop going out because of fear different than a crime that stops people of color from going out because of fear?

That's the $10,000 question. It just goes to show how muddled-up and politically tainted the definition/application of a hate-crime really is.

This is the second time in this post you went out of your way to exaggerate something I said to make fun of me......Didn't cross my mind that anyone would think that I believed that anyone attempting to modify anyone's behavior in any context was committing a hate crime.

I was just to trying to show how absurdly subjective and vague your definition of hate-crimes was.

Rather than re-emphasize your earlier point about all violent crime terrorizing people or questions of intent versus motive it was more fun to give a fucking prick answer.

yeah, sorry about that, but like I said when faced with absurdity I often revert to sarcasm.

When did the Nazis come into this? I was referring to the fact that there have been cases where wrongs have been allowed because people believed that 'stirring the pot' would only make things worse. The argument against hate crime legislation (if the viewpoint is correct) should rely on better arguments than 'it could make the situation worse'. I am sure why you accuse me of argumentum ad Hitlerum when I did no such thing and was in fact countering an appeal to consequence.

You said - and I quote: "And on the issue of the laws making it worse - the flaw I see with that is that the same arguments have been used before to protect perpetrators of many crimes."

So you rejected the arguments just because they have been used before to protect perpetrators of crimes. I'm sorry, but this IS argumentum ad Hitlerum in my books.


"We must respect the law, not let it blind us away from the basic principles of fairness, justice and freedom"
This message is a reply to:
 Message 89 by Lithodid-Man, posted 12-02-2009 6:31 PM Lithodid-Man has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 94 by Lithodid-Man, posted 12-02-2009 7:22 PM Legend has responded

  
Straggler
Member
Posts: 10285
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


(1)
Message 93 of 376 (538049)
12-02-2009 7:08 PM
Reply to: Message 88 by onifre
12-02-2009 6:11 PM


Subjugation of a Community?
I really thought twice before entering this debate as I can genuinely see some merit in both points of view being expressed. But the following I am not at all sure is true:

Oni writes:

It is an act of violence toward a single individual (or a few, or whatever) and the only ones victimized are those who were attacked. The attackers intentions could be whatever they want it to be, it doesn't matter and its irrelevant.

Where the attack in question is intended to intimidate a minority group with less social power within a limited community this just isn't true. I am thinking of KKK attacks on a prominent black individual or family to make a point and subjugate a whole racial community in the proces. Or a similar style attack on a mixed race marriage to deter further such "abhorrant" occurrances. etc. etc. You know the very real and still all too prevalent kind of thing I am talking about.

Similar situations could (and indeed do) arise when known gay pubs (for example) are repeatedly targetted by those who wish to eliminate such "offensive" establishments and practises from their small minded communities.

In an ideal world there would be no crimes. In a not-very-but-slightly-more-ideal world crimes would never be motivated by such irrational prejudiced hatreds of minority social groupings.

But in reality such occurrances do take place. And I don't see how the law can just ignore that fact if it wishes to deter such practises from taking place.

Surely recognition of hate crimes is as much of a necessity as hate crimes are a fact of reality?

Edited by Straggler, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 88 by onifre, posted 12-02-2009 6:11 PM onifre has not yet responded

  
Lithodid-Man
Member (Idle past 1093 days)
Posts: 504
From: Juneau, Alaska, USA
Joined: 03-22-2004


(1)
Message 94 of 376 (538050)
12-02-2009 7:22 PM
Reply to: Message 92 by Legend
12-02-2009 6:58 PM


Re: My $10,000 (and where's my change?)
You said - and I quote: "And on the issue of the laws making it worse - the flaw I see with that is that the same arguments have been used before to protect perpetrators of many crimes."

So you rejected the arguments just because they have been used before to protect perpetrators of crimes. I'm sorry, but this IS argumentum ad Hitlerum in my books.

And after that first sentence I explained my point. I am not rejecting anything on this - I am saying that the perceived consequences are not a necessarily a valid argument against hate crime legislation. It is NOT argumentum ad Hitlerum as I am not saying "arguments against hate crime laws are invalid because similar arguments have been used in a negative fashion in the past."

I am saying that whatever arguments there are for or against hate crime legislation an appeal to consequence is not a good one. Fear of backlash or racially motivated consequences slowed down the Civil Rights movement here in the US. The argument for or against say desegregation should have been (and ultimately was) based on legal and ethical issues and not on the fact that there could be (and in fact was) some backlash from a very bigoted society. And for the same reason we cannot use consequence when deciding the justice of hate crime laws.


Doctor Bashir: "Of all the stories you told me, which were true and which weren't?"
Elim Garak: "My dear Doctor, they're all true"
Doctor Bashir: "Even the lies?"
Elim Garak: "Especially the lies"
This message is a reply to:
 Message 92 by Legend, posted 12-02-2009 6:58 PM Legend has responded

Replies to this message:
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onifre
Member (Idle past 1113 days)
Posts: 4854
From: Dark Side of the Moon
Joined: 02-20-2008


Message 95 of 376 (538053)
12-02-2009 8:53 PM
Reply to: Message 94 by Lithodid-Man
12-02-2009 7:22 PM


Same argument on both sides
I'll answer CS and Straggler later cuz I gotta run.

But...

I am saying that the perceived consequences are not a necessarily a valid argument against hate crime legislation.

But it seems like "the perceived consequences" are trying to be used as a valid argument for the hate crime legislation.

You said:

quote:
Analogously a hate crime then becomes the original crime (murder, battery, assault) PLUS the added threat to members of the targeted community.

What added threat to the community? Are you sure the community feels threated? Or, is this the perception the crime gives?

- Oni


This message is a reply to:
 Message 94 by Lithodid-Man, posted 12-02-2009 7:22 PM Lithodid-Man has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 99 by Straggler, posted 12-03-2009 8:48 AM onifre has responded
 Message 103 by Lithodid-Man, posted 12-03-2009 1:23 PM onifre has responded

    
Rrhain
Member (Idle past 34 days)
Posts: 6349
From: San Diego, CA, USA
Joined: 05-03-2003


Message 96 of 376 (538056)
12-03-2009 2:25 AM
Reply to: Message 59 by onifre
12-01-2009 10:00 AM


onifre writes:

quote:
Let me be clearer with my question, is a person on trail for a hate crime, or charge with a hate crime, before they go to court?

Let me be clearer with my response: Is a person on trial for a murder or charged with a murder before they go to court?

Why are you only whining about ths one crime? All defendants are charged as part of going to court. All charges are made public before the trial starts because the prosecutor has to file them as part of going to court. So if you are truly concerned about "hard core, real world consequences," surely you're going to be complaining about all the other crimes that people are charged with and can cause societal reactions, right?

Why does only this one rate a response?

quote:
In the same sense as someone is charged with murder before they go to court - thats what I'm asking.

Of course. So why are you complaining about the charge of a hate crime while you don't seem to have the same issues about the charge of murder?

The prosecutor files the charges. Not the cops. Not the media.

The jury determines if the evidence warrants conviction. It is possible for the jury to return a verdict of guilty with regard to the base crime but not guilty with regard to the enhancement of hate crime.

This is exactly the same process used with regard to capital murder. First, you have to show that the defendant committed murder and then you have to show that there were the "special circumstances" that are required for a verdict of murder one. If the prosecutor can't show special circumstances, then it isn't murder one but murder two.

So why are you complaining about hate crimes and not murder?

quote:
I'm asking who gets to charge you.

The DA, just like every other crime. Why are you only complaining about hate crimes and not every other crime? They, too, have "hard core, real world social repercussions" for being accused of. Why is this one particular crime the only one that causes problems?

quote:
Right, and so the repercussions of this (maybe false) indictment could be grave, depending on the community that this happens in.

So we should deny justice because bigots might get their feelings hurt? Your argument applies to absolutely every crime. The repercussions of all (maybe false) indictments "could be grave, depending on the community that this happens in." If a financier gets accused of embezzlement, the "repercussions could be grave." Should we do away with laws regarding embezzlement because of the possible problems someone falsely accused of it might have? Change the name so that people don't have such a bad vision of what financial shenannigans are?

Why are you picking on hate crimes when you don't have any problem with the exact same problem existing on even grander scales for every other crime?

quote:
Are the benefits of labelling things hate crime worth the negative social repercussions that come with it?

Are the benefits of labeling things murder worth the negative social repercussions that come with it?

Surely your argument isn't one of petty semantics, is it? It's the same ridiculous claim that we can't call same-sex relationships "marriage" out of fear of disturbing the precious little feelings of bigots.

Since when did we take our notions of justice from those who would deny it? Your argument is that because people who don't think committing crimes against certain groups is all that bad, we shouldn't actually be honest about the crime that was committed because it would upset them to have that fact pointed out to them.

I'm in a Brian Regan monologue:

Somehow, we need to coddle people who commit crime lest people who don't think it was really a crime cop an attitude.

quote:
Now imagine this same scenario in a small town in the south, and between blacks and whites.

Are the reprecussions on the community worth the extra years in jail for hate crimes?


Yes. We don't coddle bigots because they get their feelings hurt. Surely you're not saying that the racial tensions this country has seen were lessened any because acts of terrorism against blacks were called "civil rights violations," are you? The LA riots following the verdict in the Rodney King trial didn't happen? There was no charge of hate crime...only excessive force and failure to prevent the unlawful assault. But for six days, LA was under siege and the National Guard had to be called out.

So since calling the crime something "nice" doesn't actually seem to have any effect upon how people feel about it, why are you trying to coddle bigots?

You're completely ignoring the "hard core, real world repercussions" that result in "divisive" and "lasting effects" from the commission of the crimes. So we should not deliver justice to the people who suffered the crime on the off chance that we make a mistake in prosecution?

Yes, it's tragic when it happens, but it's always tragic when a mistake in prosecution happens. It always results in "hard core, real world repercussions."

Why are you only complaining about this one?


Rrhain

Thank you for your submission to Science. Your paper was reviewed by a jury of seventh graders so that they could look for balance and to allow them to make up their own minds. We are sorry to say that they found your paper "bogus," specifically describing the section on the laboratory work "boring." We regret that we will be unable to publish your work at this time.

Minds are like parachutes. Just because you've lost yours doesn't mean you can use mine.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 59 by onifre, posted 12-01-2009 10:00 AM onifre has not yet responded

    
Rrhain
Member (Idle past 34 days)
Posts: 6349
From: San Diego, CA, USA
Joined: 05-03-2003


Message 97 of 376 (538059)
12-03-2009 3:08 AM
Reply to: Message 61 by Hyroglyphx
12-01-2009 1:19 PM


Hyroglyphx writes:

quote:
I did some investigating and as if turns out the United States Commission on Civil Rights actually opposed the bill we are now debating, citing very similar arguments as my own.

No, it doesn't. Where on earth do you find justification for this? Their only arguments are that it would result in retrial at the federal level of those found not guilty at the state level and that the bill would result in crimes they do not consider to be "hate crimes" being prosecuted as such.

Did you even read your own source? The very first footnote indicates that it is a statement only for the four members of the Commission that are on the letter. The other four members weren't asked:

We have not polled the other four members of the Commission, and this letter should in no way be taken to suggest that they have taken any particular position on the measure.

So this isn't actually an official statement by the US Commission on Civil Rights. It's just a joint statement by four individual people. And who are these four people?

Gerald A. Reynolds was appointed by Bush and made his career out of the fact that he's a black person who opposed civil rights legislation. He's the leader of the Center for New Black Leadership, a reactionary conservative group.

Todd Gaziano is on the staff of the Heritage Foundation and a contributor to the National Review, well-known reactionary conservative groups. He brought in Hans Von Spakovsky, a well-known foe of voting rights, to work with the Commission as a consultant. He is trying to hold hearings regarding the New Black Panthers even though the Department of Justice dismissed the case.

Gail L. Heriot was one of the champions for Prop 209 here in California. She's routinely written against affirmative action.

Peter N. Kirsanow is also a member of the Center for New Black Leadership as well as the National Center for Public Policy Research, another reactionary conservative group.

So basically you've got a statement by four right-wing conservatives who are not speaking for the Commission but trying to make it look like their comemnts are official statements.

The statment made by these four individuals is filled with innuendo in direct contradiction to the very people who wrote the bill. Contrary to what some may tell you (and what the Bush administration thought), courts take legislative intent into account when interpreting the law (not executive intent). If the intent of the legislature was that this law was not intended to prosecute rape as a general course, then the courts will understand that and realize that it won't apply unless rapists are doing so in accordance with the intent of the law: Committing a crime against an individual as a proxy for the rest of the group.

They can't even cite people who support their suspicions but instead resort to anonymice who don't actually support their claim. Instead, they merely don't specifically deny it:

While Senator Edward Kennedy has written that it was not his intention to cover all rape with LLEHCPA, some DOJ officials have declined to disclaim such coverage.

"Some DOJ officials"? Exactly who are these officials? "Decline to disclaim"? Yeah, that's specific. What, precisely, did they say? Was their "declining" simply along the lines of, "We will not comment on any hypothetical prosecution"? Or was it them asking the secretaries who said they were in no position to indicate what DoJ policy would be?

Is there a reason you were less than honest about what this letter said? Did you actually read it or did you just do a troll of right-wing sites to try and find something, anything you might use to buttress your argument?


Rrhain

Thank you for your submission to Science. Your paper was reviewed by a jury of seventh graders so that they could look for balance and to allow them to make up their own minds. We are sorry to say that they found your paper "bogus," specifically describing the section on the laboratory work "boring." We regret that we will be unable to publish your work at this time.

Minds are like parachutes. Just because you've lost yours doesn't mean you can use mine.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 61 by Hyroglyphx, posted 12-01-2009 1:19 PM Hyroglyphx has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
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Rrhain
Member (Idle past 34 days)
Posts: 6349
From: San Diego, CA, USA
Joined: 05-03-2003


Message 98 of 376 (538061)
12-03-2009 4:35 AM
Reply to: Message 62 by onifre
12-01-2009 1:47 PM


onifre responds to me:

quote:
Sources, specifics, what cases, etc.....

That would be the FBI. That's why I said, "according to the FBI." The Department of Justice has prosecuted 132 cases between 2001 and 2006. That is out of 55,000 documented hate crimes (according to the FBI).

Do your own homework.

quote:
Did I say 10 minutes worth of testimony, did I say unreliable witnesses...

Did you have to? You're not stupid. Your arguments, however, are implicative of prosecutors being generally incompetent and bring charges they haven't really investigated and think they can prove. That prosecution for hate crimes is common and often results in not guilty verdicts.

You were the one who said that everybody lied in your scenario. So the prosecutors were dumb and couldn't figure this out?

And this is typical?

quote:
quote:
Surely you're not hinting that hate crimes prosecutions are out of control, are you?

Not at all.


Then what's your complaint? According to the FBI, there were about twice as many homicides (more than 14,000) as hate crimes (a bit under 8,000) in 2008. Surely being accused of murder is just as bad if not worse than being accused of a hate crime, no?

quote:
Only when they're dressed like Peter Pan.

I wouldn't know. Peter Pan dresses in a tight green or brown tunic:



The first two being Mary Martin while the last is Cathy Rigby in her most recent turn as Peter.

That, of course, assumes Peter wears anything at all:

This being the recent movie Peter.

Hamlet, on the other hand, often shows up in a peasant shirt since it's the iconic "Elizabethan" stereotype. I'd use the picture of me as Juliet as my icon since it's a much more dramatic one, but it's a long shot of me sitting on a ladder and you can barely make out the details when it's reduced to thumbnail size since it, too, is a single light shining down on a completely dark stage.

I highly recommend you see The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) if you have the chance. The Reduced Shakespeare Company often tours, though I don't know if they still do Shakespeare anymore since it was originally done so long ago.

From their West End performance, the first part of the Hamlet section, watch out for the "What a piece of work is man?" speech at about 8:50. It'll look familiar:

And then, of course, there's backwards Hamlet:

I'd love to play Peter Pan. To get to be put in a flying harness and put to soar over the audience? To have children truly believe you can fly? Alas, I'm not a woman and I'm a baritone with a somewhat prominent larynx. It'd be hard for me to pull off a boy. I've played Schroeder, but You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown is more about the spirit of youth rather than actually looking like a child.

Of course, if someone is insecure in one's identity, I don't recommend going into the theatre. If you're going to be any good, you have to present yourself believably as something you're not. Tell us, do you think the people who play murderers, rapists, and thieves are telling us something about themselves or do you only reserve that attitude for homophobic reactions?

But that's OK, onifre. I'm not going to have sex with you. So please stop asking.

quote:
Having not heard the testimonies from the witnesses, not seen the case or the details of the fight ... how then do you know they are criminals?

Innocent til proven guilty, right?


Indeed, but this is the great doublethink required of our justice system: It doesn't get to trial unless there is evidence of something happening. Smoke doesn't equal fire, but smoke indicates something going on. The accused is innocent but probably guilty.

I highly recommend the article, "Lawspeak and Doublethink" by Barbara Allen Babcock, written for the anthology, On Ninteen Eighty-Four, published by the Stanford Alumni Association for the Portable Stanford:

In law, as in politics, family life, and literature, doublethink is also often a valuable instrument. A good example is the presumption of innocence for the criminally accused. The law enjoins fact finders to treat the defendant as "clothed" in this presumption when he is brought to trial. One of the oldest, and best, defense lawyer's stratagems is to ask prospective jurors whether they have formed an opinion about the defendant's guilt. When a juror says "no," the lawyer responds: "Well, you should have an opinion; your opinion should be that according to the law this is an innocent person." In fact, the presumption of innocence is a "carefully constructed lie" which must be entertained together with the statistical and common-sense knowledge that in the vast majority of cases the accused is guilty and that he is on trial as a result of an intensive investigative process that has produced evidence to that effect. The two beliefsthat the accused is innocent and that he is probably guiltymust be held simultaneously and both accepted.

Indeed, mistaken prosecution is a tragedy. But you haven't shown why mistaken prosecution regarding commission of a hate crime is so horrid as to outweigh the justice achieved by convicting those who have committed it.

Especially when an accusation of murder is more common and more shunned by society, at least.


Rrhain

Thank you for your submission to Science. Your paper was reviewed by a jury of seventh graders so that they could look for balance and to allow them to make up their own minds. We are sorry to say that they found your paper "bogus," specifically describing the section on the laboratory work "boring." We regret that we will be unable to publish your work at this time.

Minds are like parachutes. Just because you've lost yours doesn't mean you can use mine.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 62 by onifre, posted 12-01-2009 1:47 PM onifre has not yet responded

    
Straggler
Member
Posts: 10285
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


Message 99 of 376 (538064)
12-03-2009 8:48 AM
Reply to: Message 95 by onifre
12-02-2009 8:53 PM


Hate Laws - Straggler's Case In Favour
Hey Oni
I am addressing this to you only because you seem up for the debate. It is a general statement of my position on this issue having thought about it a bit.

A main point of disagreement here seems to be the application of the law as much as the law itself. To be convicted of a hate crime merely for getting into a fight with a guy who happens to be gay (for example) is patently ridiculous. But that is not what this is about. What this is about is the evidenced targeting of vulnerable minorities for the purposes of intimidation and subjugation.

There was a special needs school down the road from my school when I was a kid. This school was the focus of much ire and prejudice. The kids were considered fair game by many. Yelled taunts and threats were an everyday occurrence. The school itself had broken windows from thrown stones and the walls and gates were covered with graffiti expressing such erudite witticisms as "Fuck Off Spaccers" and the like. Pupils, mentally and physically disabled kids, were regularly tormented and physically abused on their way to and from the school. It was all pretty nasty.

Now we could have the law view this situation as a series of disparate offences. We could treat each incident as if it were a separate and random occurrence that just happens to have the same broad target. We could have the law treat each occurrence as an isolated event that is judged on it's own merits with no wider context involved. A bit of petty bullying here. A broken window there. No big deal.

But from the perspective of the victims this was a relentless, systematic and concerted campaign of abuse and intimidation. A never ending attack borne of prejudice and the rule of mob law in which no one individual was wholly culpable or punishable. A situation in which the whole added up to something far more sinister and undesirable than the sum of the individual parts.

So what do we do? Well we could require that the law reflect reality. We could require that the law see such attacks from the view of the victims who are not, in fact, subject to a string of random and unfortunate unrelated occurrences. But who are in fact being specifically targeted by the bigoted majority for being different in some way.

Now my example involves a school and particularly vulnerable kids who blatantly need protecting from such bigotry. But I suspect we can all think of vaguely comparable potential examples pertaining to other social groupings. Social groupings who might be considered better able to defend themselves. But that just isn't the point. The same sort of treatment could be dished out to any minority social grouping by a large enough majority. And it isn't just about individuals. It is also about places of social gathering and the right to attend such places freely and safely under the law. A mosque. A gay bar. A wedding ceremony. An ethnic community. Whatever.

The law has to reflect reality. If there is DEMONSTRABLE EVIDENCE that a minority or social grouping is being systematically targeted then as a society we have to stand up and say that this is unacceptable and will not be tolerated. The laws must reflect this stance. And the punishments served out to those that infringe these laws must reflect this stance.

I'll now get off my soapbox and leave others to ponder the merits or otherwise or my little rant.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 95 by onifre, posted 12-02-2009 8:53 PM onifre has responded

Replies to this message:
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Hyroglyphx
Member
Posts: 5655
From: Austin, TX
Joined: 05-03-2006


Message 100 of 376 (538072)
12-03-2009 10:04 AM
Reply to: Message 87 by 1.61803
12-02-2009 5:59 PM


Re: My $10,000 (and where's my change?)
Hate crime legislation in my opinion is all about deterance. Its bad enough to kill someone, but worse to do it because they different. If it is unjust and a example of Orwellian thought crimes so be it. I would rather deter a racist from dropping the hammer on me or my loved ones. Your thoughts?

No one is suggesting that we like hate-crimes or agree with their premise. The bottom line is that the crime of assault/murder is crime regardless of the motive. So in essence people who commit hate-crimes are being charged once for the crime they committed and being punished doubly for their belief system.

Secondly, this bill, just like all of its predecessors, has not and will not deter anything. For one thing, members of race-identity groups do not feel they are doing anything wrong. You and I obviously disagree with them.

My central issue is that this threatens the 1st and 14th Amendments, respectively, is therfore not Constitutional.

Why should the motive or pretense of "hate" trump an equally tragic motive of murder for robbery? How does that constitute equal protection when murder is murder? It doesn't add up, and glibly saying "that's how we roll," only defecates on the Constitution.


"Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence." --John Adams
This message is a reply to:
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Jazzns
Member (Idle past 2074 days)
Posts: 2657
From: A Better America
Joined: 07-23-2004


Message 101 of 376 (538075)
12-03-2009 10:49 AM
Reply to: Message 97 by Rrhain
12-03-2009 3:08 AM


I thought it was suspicious that it wasn't published on the USCCR website. Thanks for doing the detective work.


If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be. --Thomas Jefferson
This message is a reply to:
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Legend
Member (Idle past 3168 days)
Posts: 1226
From: Wales, UK
Joined: 05-07-2004


Message 102 of 376 (538082)
12-03-2009 12:17 PM
Reply to: Message 99 by Straggler
12-03-2009 8:48 AM


Legend's Case Against
But from the perspective of the victims this was a relentless, systematic and concerted campaign of abuse and intimidation.

Yes, it was a relentless, systematic and concerted campaign of abuse and intimidation. Being abused like that always is terrible, regardless of the reason behind the abuse.

Tell me, if these kids were hounded not because they were disabled but, say, because the locals opposed the morning traffic caused by the school in their area, would it make it any LESS of a relentless, systematic and concerted campaign of abuse and intimidation ?

Tell me, if this wasn't a disabled school and was a MENSA-sponsored school instead, and the locals were beating up and abusing the kids shouting 'fucking brainiac' instead of 'fucking spaz' , would it make it any LESS of a relentless, systematic and concerted campaign of abuse and intimidation ?

The things is, violence and abuse feels the same to the victim regardless of the motive behind it. When you're dragged to the ground, beaten and kicked, knowing that you weren't targeted because of your association to a particular group doesn't make you feel any less helpless, any less scared or any less shamed.

The elephant in the room that supporters of hate-crime laws refuse to acknowledge is that violence and abuse has THE SAME EFFECT on the victims, regardless of the motive.

So yeah, we can pass all the hate-laws we like and we may sleep a bit better at night, in the knowledge that we did the 'right' thing but the fact remains that NO ONE IS BETTER OFF because of these laws. In fact, a few innocent people end up being considerably worse off and the threat to even our freedom of thought becomes even greater (never mind freedom of speech, we lost that a long time ago to the same people who brought us 'hate-crimes').


"We must respect the law, not let it blind us away from the basic principles of fairness, justice and freedom"
This message is a reply to:
 Message 99 by Straggler, posted 12-03-2009 8:48 AM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 104 by Straggler, posted 12-03-2009 2:33 PM Legend has not yet responded

  
Lithodid-Man
Member (Idle past 1093 days)
Posts: 504
From: Juneau, Alaska, USA
Joined: 03-22-2004


Message 103 of 376 (538088)
12-03-2009 1:23 PM
Reply to: Message 95 by onifre
12-02-2009 8:53 PM


Re: Same argument on both sides
Thanks Oni, some very good points! As I mentioned in my first post (however 'irrelevant', 'vague', 'absurd' and 'naive' and worthy of mockery it might have been) these questions are from a viewpoint I had not really considered much until recently.

But it seems like "the perceived consequences" are trying to be used as a valid argument for the hate crime legislation.

You said:

Analogously a hate crime then becomes the original crime (murder, battery, assault) PLUS the added threat to members of the targeted community.

What added threat to the community? Are you sure the community feels threated? Or, is this the perception the crime gives?

I see your point. I think (if this makes sense) the answer is in the definition of hate crime. It is not (or should not) be any crime committed against a person or persons of an ethnic group by a member of another ethnic group. It should be a crime where the obvious and clear intent of the crime was to bend the will of one ethnicity to that of another through fear and intimidation. Something is NOT a hate crime (imho) just because some people say it is, it would be cases where there was a clear and obvious intent.

As an example, let's say that one morning in NYC the police find a Muslim man dead in the street, killed execution style and left where he died. Later it was shown that the killer was Jewish and tied to a strongly Zionist group. I would be reasonably sure that lots of people would be going ballistic and calling it a hate crime. Without any other evidence I would not be in agreement of the legislation applying in this case. No matter how much public or media appeal there was, I would be opposed to a definition of hate crime that applied to this case (again, provided the only evidence of this was association with a group that might support such actions). Even if the perpetrator was an admitted racist, I do not believe one could adequately show that the crime was not personal but a statement to a community.

If, however, the same situation occurred and there was evidence that this crime was deliberately intended as a message to the Muslim community then I would define this as a hate crime. If there was anti-Muslim graffiti, or a manifesto, or something about the murder was deliberately done as to send a clear message to the target ethnic group then I believe that a hate crime occurred and the penalties should be increased.

And to restate, if the legislation is so vague as to allow for cases of individual violence (as in inter-ethnic violence with other motivation) to be blanketed under the term, then I completely agree that it should be redone.

Thanks again for your questions. It is very useful for me to hear pointed questions that force me to really examine an issue, especially if it is an issue I have not spent a great deal of time studying.


Doctor Bashir: "Of all the stories you told me, which were true and which weren't?"
Elim Garak: "My dear Doctor, they're all true"
Doctor Bashir: "Even the lies?"
Elim Garak: "Especially the lies"
This message is a reply to:
 Message 95 by onifre, posted 12-02-2009 8:53 PM onifre has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 114 by onifre, posted 12-05-2009 5:06 PM Lithodid-Man has not yet responded

    
Straggler
Member
Posts: 10285
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


(1)
Message 104 of 376 (538093)
12-03-2009 2:33 PM
Reply to: Message 102 by Legend
12-03-2009 12:17 PM


Re: Legend's Case Against
Fear as much as actual violence is what we are talking about here. Subjugation and intimidation. This is the most important point. And you managed to entirely miss it. Hate crimes and their effects are a reality. The law needs to deal with reality.

Legend writes:

Yes, it was a relentless, systematic and concerted campaign of abuse and intimidation. Being abused like that always is terrible, regardless of the reason behind the abuse.

True. But being hounded for what you are is to be hounded for something that neither you nor anyone else can change. Living in fear of hatred is what we are trying to avoid here. Allowing people the freedom to be who and what they are, or choose to be, free from fear. Is that not a basic human right? Hate crimes infringe this basic human right. Hate crimes and their effects are a reality. The law needs to deal with reality.

Legend writes:

Tell me, if these kids were hounded not because they were disabled but, say, because the locals opposed the morning traffic caused by the school in their area, would it make it any LESS of a relentless, systematic and concerted campaign of abuse and intimidation?

No. But A) This doesn't happen in reality. B) If it did happen in reality there are other practical measures that can be taken to resolve the underlying issue and change the situation. But disabled kids being abused because they are disabled cannot be made un-disabled. Living in fear of hatred because you are disabled is unjustifaible in a civilised society. Hate crimes and their effects are a reality. The law needs to deal with reality.

Legend writes:

Tell me, if this wasn't a disabled school and was a MENSA-sponsored school instead, and the locals were beating up and abusing the kids shouting 'fucking brainiac' instead of 'fucking spaz' , would it make it any LESS of a relentless, systematic and concerted campaign of abuse and intimidation?

Again this doesn't happen in reality. But whatever the social grouping being attacked and intimidated should be protected in my view. People should not have to live in fear. Hate crimes and their effects are a reality. The law needs to deal with reality.

Legend writes:

The things is, violence and abuse feels the same to the victim regardless of the motive behind it. When you're dragged to the ground, beaten and kicked, knowing that you weren't targeted because of your association to a particular group doesn't make you feel any less helpless, any less scared or any less shamed.

But being a member of a targeted group will inevitably affect your life in ways that don't even require you to experience abuse first hand. Fear of coming out regarding your sexuality. Knowing that you will be hated for the colour of your skin before you even step outside your front door. Knowing that you cannot congregate with those who are of the same religion or culture as you for fear of provoking attack. Being unable to practise the religion of your choice without facing intimidation. Living a double life or restricted life out of fear of violence. Etc. etc.

The end point, the actual physical abuse suffered, is just the final and obvious part of the hatred in question. It is living under a cloud of fear and intimidation that we are ultimately trying to stop by implementing appropriate laws here. That is, if anything, more important. Giving people the freedom to be who and what they are or choose to be. Is that not a basic human right?

Legend writes:

The elephant in the room that supporters of hate-crime laws refuse to acknowledge is that violence and abuse has THE SAME EFFECT on the victims, regardless of the motive.

But the threat of violence and abuse is equally, maybe even more so, important in these situations. It is about the human right to live your life as you choose within the law without fear and intimidation for being who and what you are. Giving people the freedom to do this. Is that not a basic human right?

The elephant in your room is your complete unwillingness to deal with the main effect, and indeed aim, of hate crimes. Namely intimidation and subjegation.

Legend writes:

So yeah, we can pass all the hate-laws we like and we may sleep a bit better at night, in the knowledge that we did the 'right' thing but the fact remains that NO ONE IS BETTER OFF because of these laws.

I think the teachers and pupils at that school I mentioned would disagree. I do too. Giving people the freedom to be who and what they are or choose to be free from fear. Is that not a basic human right?

Legend writes:

In fact, a few innocent people end up being considerably worse off and the threat to even our freedom of thought becomes even greater (never mind freedom of speech, we lost that a long time ago to the same people who brought us 'hate-crimes').

Did you read my post? Did I propose anything that would have restricted any thoughts you might wish to have or any words that you might wish to say? If so can you tell me where I said that specifically?

Any laws applied badly will be bad laws. Hate crimes and their effects are a reality. The law needs to deal with reality.

Edited by Straggler, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 102 by Legend, posted 12-03-2009 12:17 PM Legend has not yet responded

  
1.61803
Member
Posts: 2838
From: Lone Star State USA
Joined: 02-19-2004
Member Rating: 5.7


Message 105 of 376 (538104)
12-03-2009 4:42 PM
Reply to: Message 100 by Hyroglyphx
12-03-2009 10:04 AM


Re: My $10,000 (and where's my change?)
No one is suggesting that we like hate-crimes or agree with their premise. The bottom line is that the crime of assault/murder is crime regardless of the motive. So in essence people who commit hate-crimes are being charged once for the crime they committed and being punished doubly for their belief system.
I understand your point. However I agree with the legislators on this particular law. Laws are not only made to mite out justice, they are made to protect us as well. Someones constitutional rights are protected until they are found guilty of crimes. The perps get they're day in court.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 100 by Hyroglyphx, posted 12-03-2009 10:04 AM Hyroglyphx has not yet responded

  
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